Roscosmos Space agency Press Service has provided this photo of the Nauka module before it docks with the International Space Station on July 29, 2021. Eight days after its launch from Baikonur, Kazakhstan, Russia's long-delayed laboratory module, the Russian space station successfully docked with it on Thursday. After a long journey, and several maneuvers, the 20-metric-ton (22 ton) Nauka module was successfully docked to the orbiting outpost. Credit: Roscosmos Space Agency Press Service photo via AP
The International Space Station was briefly displaced by a Russian science laboratory that had just arrived. It accidentally fired its thrusters on Thursday, and it was temporarily knocked out of position.
The space station lost control over its orientation for 47 minutes after docking. The firing, which occurred just a few hours later, pushed the orbiting complex out of its normal configuration. Station's position is crucial for receiving power from solar panels or communications. For a few moments, communications with ground controllers are also interrupted twice.
NASA stated that flight controllers have regained control of the ship using thrusters from other Russian components.
Joel Montalbano, space station program manager, stated that "we haven't seen any damage," during a press conference in the late afternoon. The crew was not in immediate danger.
Montalbano stated that the crew didn’t feel any movement or shaking. NASA stated that the station moved 45 degrees from its original attitude, or about one-eighth to complete a circle. Bob Jacobs, a NASA spokesperson, said that the complex never spun.
NASA's chief human spaceflight officer Kathy Lueders described it as "a pretty exciting hour."
NASA had originally scheduled a Friday afternoon flight from Florida to test Boeing's crew capsule. However, the incident forced NASA to cancel that flight. This will be Boeing's second attempt at reaching the station at 250 miles high before placing astronauts on board. The first failed due to software issues.
NASA provided this Thursday, July 29, 2021 photo of the 22-ton (20-metric-ton) Nauka module as it approached the International Space Station space station. Russia's long-delayed laboratory module docked successfully with the International Space Station Thursday, eight days after its launch from the Russian space launch center in Baikonur (Kazakhstan) on Wednesday. Credit: NASA via AP
Russia's delayed 22-ton (20 metric-ton), lab named Nauka arrived earlier Thursday eight days after it launched from Baikonur, Kazakhstan.
Technical problems repeatedly caused delays in the launch of Nauka. This will allow for more space for scientific experiments as well as for crew members. It was originally scheduled to launch in 2007.
Experts discovered contamination in the fuel system in 2013. This led to a lengthy and expensive replacement. Other Nauka systems were also modernized or repaired.
Nauka, measuring 43 feet (13 m) in length, was the first new compartment to be created for the Russian section of the outpost since 2010. Nauka, measuring 43 feet (13 meters) in length, was the first new compartment for the Russian segment of the outpost since 2010.
To prepare Nauka for operation, it will need many maneuvers including 11 spacewalks starting in September.
Current astronauts of NASA are Mark Vande Hei and Shane Kimbrough, Megan McArthur and Oleg Novitsky from Russia's Roscosmos Space Corporation; Pyotr Dubrov and Oleg Novitsky from Russia's Roscosmos Space Corporation; Akihiko Hishide, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency astronaut, and Thomas Pesquet, European Space Agency astronaut.
Russia launched Zarya in 1998. In 2000, Zvezda was followed by Zvezda and three modules. In 2010, Rassvet arrived at the station.
Russian space officials dismissed the incident with Dmitry Rogozin (head of Roscosmos), tweeting: "All in good order at the ISS. The crew is currently resting. This is what I recommend you do.
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